Word of the Day: January 7, 2022 Just Because I Love You!
As I am in my prayer time, a quickening of a work of God that I needed in my life in the early1990's came to me in prayer. I thought at first it was a distraction of going deeper in the Lord, but I felt a compelling that I need to write it on facebook and share it today.
I had been pastoring for about 2 years in the early 90's and we were renting a church building in Waterbury CT and were struggling financially to meet the bills and our personal needs.
By this time, I didn't quite fit in with the present church structures and fellowship groups that were forming in the area. I saw how many of the churches were being led by a "driving spirit" to build something big for God.
I saw many leaders and Pastors in the area desiring to be on TBN, do great things for God, yet the saints that went to those churches were barely being ministered to. It seemed that the leaders in the area saw there members there only to "help them build their ministry."
I saw many gifted young people rise up and then fall because of not having the seasoning of God's character in them. I saw leaders use these young ones to build their ministries and when they began to need ministry themselves, the Pastors replaced them with the "new rising" star hurting and leaving abandoned the ones that came before them.
Our church was known for flowing the prophetic and in deliverance and many of those bruised ones came to our church to receive healing and a Word from the Lord. Even if they were not wounded, many saints in the area came to our church to be ministered to, encourage, set free, healed and delivered and God graciously did that for those who came.
Yet, in the midst of having our own congregation and the visitors we never really received close to the funds we needed for it, plus I had stepped out of my full time job to serve God's people fully.
Many leaders felt that was a wrong choice, but I knew God called me out. I knew it the day when I was praying over our prayer boards which had pictures of each family member on it, or those who needed prayer.
As I was laying my hands on those pictures, God asked me, do you love them more than your own life as I do for you? I said, "yes Lord!" He said, "when their lives are more valuable to you than yours, and you love their families as I love yours, you will understand my Kingdom.
He said, You can go back to a regular job and provide for your family, or you can lay your life down for all those I calling you to care for and all those that come here and trust Me to provide for you.
The choice was easy for me, and I chose the latter. For quite a while I was content with the struggle of not having enough finances and trusting God to provide for us. I was praying things would get better, but they got worse and I was really upset about it.
I remember standing in the sanctuary praying for everyone on the prayer wall. It was just me and God, and I broke down and let out what was in my heart.
I said, "Lord it is not fair, it is not fair." Lord, all the other churches around me for the most part don't even care for the sheep. They have salaries, play gulf, have nice houses, cars and they don't even see their sheep true needs. It is not fair, I can't even rub 2 nickels together. It is not fair.
I continued my rant and said, "Lord, I have been faithful to do what you wanted me to do. I have laid my life down for you and the sheep, and those other Pastors are blessed. They are building big new buildings and we can't even pay the rent. It is not fair. Why are you allowing me and our church to suffer like this?
I said, "Lord all these people come here to meet you and get set free and you free them, and they don't even leave a love offering often, and then they go back to their dead dry churches that can't help them and give them the tithes and offerings, and that is not fair. (It is hard for me so many years later that was truly in my heart.. yuck)
I was very young in the Lord still, and I had no idea of the ways of God at this time. I really vented because I wanted the Lord to comfort me. I wanted Him to tell me, oh you poor son, I know how hard it is for you, thank you for your willingness to suffer for me, I see all you are doing and let me give you a hug to make it better.
That is what I thought I needed to suffer more for the Lord. Yet, this day God was going to bring a fundamental shift in my ability to see Him and know Him as God Almighty!
He did answer me, but the answer got me even more frustrated and upset. He said to me, "Henry, your righteousness is but a filthy rag to Me."
Beloved, I was very upset by these words. I cried out to God out load, "HOW IS THIS MY RIGHTEOUSNESS. I DID EVERYTHING YOU ASKED ME TO DO AS FAR AS I KNOW, WHEN I FAILED, I REPENTED. I DID ALL YOU ASKED OF ME.. HOW.. HOW IS THIS MY RIGHTEOUSNESS?
Then I fell to floor and wept. I was undone, broken beyond anything I had known before. I sobbed for a while and just said, "God I give up, thou you slay me, yet I will still trust you."
A few moments later the Lord answered me with Words that CHANGED MY LIFE FOREVER!
Here is what He told Me. "Henry, let us get this straight once and for all, I AM NEVER GOING TO PROVIDE FOR YOU BECAUSE OF ANYTHING YOU HAVE DONE FOR ME OR EVER WIL DO FOR ME. I AM GOING TO PROVIDE FOR YOU FOR ONE REASON AND ONE REASON ONLY...
Then there was a pause, and I said, "what is that Lord?" He replied to me, HENRY, I AM GOING TO PROVIDE FOR YOU FOR REASON ONLY... I.... ABSOLUTELY..... LOVE... YOU! THAT IS THE ONLY REASON WHY I WOULD EVER PROVIDE FOR YOU BECAUSE I LOVE YOUR PERFECTLY!
Beloved, what a moment of deliverance God gave me here. Working for God, doing what He asked us to do can never be used to justify ourselves before God or a reason for him to do anything for us including providing for us.
When I brought that before him as a reason to justify myself, I said, God you are unfair, you are not just, and you should do this for me because I did this for you. At that moment God was my Employer and I was His employee and I was demanding my pay now!
Though I did do those thing for and with the Lord, all those things were from Him and not me. I just obeyed Him. How could I bring what I did before God to justify myself, my hardship and suffering to make God do anything for me. I brought the Lord a Cain offering, the best of my hands work and He rejected that offering as He rejected Cain's.
Yet, He did not reject me. He had to readjust my understanding of Him and His ways and where I did not really know what TRUE LOVE was for Me. I couldn't earn my provision or his love. Why? I already had it because of the Blood of Jesus. My righteousness was but a filthy rag in His sight.
That day, I was changed from the inside out. That day God cut our the fear, doubt and unbelief that somehow he would fail to care for me, and He watered my faith in Him and caused it to be rooted in Him only and not what I could ever do for Him.
I got off the floor a changed man with a changed heart that from that day on. I can say I know Him as Jehovah Jireh: The Lord who provides. Since that day, I have see miracle provision and God make ways where I never thought possible to meet our needs personally and for the ministry work as well.
I have learned the truth, My heavenly Father knows what we need before we even ask, and If I put the kingdom of God first, and His righteousness, ALL THESE THINGS WILL BE ADDED UNTO ME. WE WALK BY FAITH AND NOT BY SIGHT, THE JUST SHALL LIVE BY FAITH THAT GOD IS GOD, OUR ALL IN ALL.
My heart was actually blocking me from receiving God's provision, because all that I did in obeying Him was making me feel " I earned my provision, let's have it." I earned nothing. MY RIGHTEOUSNESS WAS BUT A FILTHY RAG.
GOD PROVIDED FOR ME ALWAYS, I JUST LOST SIGHT OF THAT IN THE SUFFERING.! I NEED A REBUKE AND CORRECTION OF THE LORD. I NEEDED TO CUT AWAY THE FLESH SO I COULD LIVE IN THE SPIRIT.
NOW I CAN SAY FOR SURE FROM A PURE AND SINCER HEART THAT GOD IS JEHOVAH JIRAH AND THAT HE WILL PROVIDE ALL MY NEEDS ACCORDING TO HIS RICHES IN GLORY NOT BECAUSE I AM 5 FOLD MINISTER WORKING FOR GOD.
HE WILL PROVIDE FOR ME BECAUSE I AM HIS SON, WHY WOULDN'T HE? A SON THAT HE ABSOLUTELY LOVES MORE THAN HIS OWN LIFE, SO WHY WOULD HE NOT MEET ALL MY NEEDS.
Beloved, We can't buy God's love? We can "angle for God" loves. We can demand our pay because of our obedience. GOD WILL PROVIDE, AND DOES PROVIDE FOR US EVERYTHING WE NEED... BECAUSE... BECAUSE.. HE ABSOLUTELY LOVES US!
I don't know why I had to leave my prayer time to write this, but I am writing this for the one God is having me write today because He loves you that much as He love me and all of us.
I pray this testimony blesses you as it did for me and change my life forever.
He that has ears, let Him hear what the Spirit of God says to the churches!